This is such a beautifully told story and I feared it was going to break my heart because books like this usually do. It didn’t and I’m glad for that. It gets all five stars because it never let me down.
Kya is just a child when her mother, older sisters and eventually her abusive father abandon her in the marsh. She has no education and must use her wits to survive and despite all of the odds she does. She’s strong, smart and resourceful and even though the church going townsfolk cruelly call her “Swamp Trash” and other unsavory names, as they hold their beautifully clean children close, she doesn’t let it get her down and finds help and friendship in the most unexpected of places.
I adored this book so much and think everyone should read it. It’s uplifting and gorgeous and also very gritty and down to earth. Kya is my kind of kid who grows into a woman who doesn’t abide any crap from the people and the men who continually let her down. At one point she calls one a “Chickenshit Asshole” and I wanted to hug her as I laughed because she was so right and I was thinking the same thing for pages and pages on end.
It’s a lovely read about the strength of spirit, the mistakes of youth, of friendship and kindness, resilience, prejudice and forgiveness and also the strange alluring beauty of the swamp and all that surrounds it. I recommend it with all that’s left of my heart.